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6 Hot Southern Waterfront Communities


Listen up Realtors! Buyers are looking for coastal homes. According to Pew Social Trends, nearly half of Americans want to pick up and move to a new place. Mountainous towns like Denver top their list of popular choices, with coastal towns not far behind. Buyers with a case of coastal living wanderlust don’t have to look to Hawaii or a dramatic move to the Caribbean to make their dreams a reality. Whether finding a new location to settle into for retirement or a a family-friendly locale that fits all of a young families needs; these coastal towns are popular choices for all potential home buyers.

Tybee Island, Georgia

This family-friendly island off the coast of Savannah in Georgia, offers residents a quiet escape with hiking, waterfront, a hopping boardwalk and historic lighthouse. The six mile McQueen's Island Historic Trail takes residents through the islands natural beauty and developed areas. Watersports like paddle boarding and kayaking are popular, and locals also love being just across the bridge from Savannah for a range of amenities and entertainment options.

  • Buyer Profile: Families.
  • County: Chatham County.
  • Median Listing Price: $184,900.

Ocracoke Island, North Carolina

Residents can enjoy the quiet life along the Pamlico Sound in North Carolina. The barrier island, Ocracoke Island, offers small town life where everyone knows everyone else. Roughly 900 people live on the island and locals gather for community events, biking and fishing. The island is just 14 miles long and despite hurricane weather, residents are deeply committed to their island and have no plans of leaving its pristine beauty. The Ocracoke beaches are part of the United States National Park system and this areas is free of high-rise and hotel eyesores.

  • Buyer Profile: Retirees.
  • County: Hyde County.
  • Median Listing Price: $85,000.

Beaufort, South Carolina

Beaufort is the second-oldest city in South Carolina with preserved buildings and homes in every corner. Beaufort is much bigger than many of the South's small coastal towns with over 12,000 locals and an urban center, making it a desirable locale for potential home buyers.

  • Buyer Profile: Families and Retirees.
  • County: Beaufort County.
  • Median Listing Price: $319,000.

Gulf Shores, Alabama

Gulf Shores consistently ranks on top places to live lists. The Bon Secour National Wildlife refuge is a popular attraction and helps drive the local seafood industry. Nearly 10,000 locals live in the area and the cost of living is 2.4 percent lower than the U.S. average, according to Sperling's Best Places. Boating and fishing are both popular in the area, though enjoying local water recreation does require a boating license.

  • Buyer Profile: Families.
  • County: Baldwin County.
  • Median Listing Price: $219,900.

Kiawah Island, South Carolina

The barrier island of Kiawah in South Carolina offers 10 miles of beaches and palmettos, oak and magnolia trees. Nature enthusiasts will love the unspoiled island for its wealth of rare birds. Bike paths, shopping hubs, golfing and beachfront properties makes the island a draw for newcomer looking to set down new roots. Under 2,000 residents call the area home, making it a quiet reprieve from nearby city life. Despite the unspoiled landscape and intimate community, Kiawah is just a stone's through from bustling Charleston.

  • Buyer Profile: Retirees.
  • County: Chareleston County.
  • Median Listing Price: $298,500.

Galveston Island, Texas

Despite the small city size, with fewer than 50,000 residents, Galveston offers a diverse population dotted with historic buildings, hotels and new entertainment options. In the 19th century, Galveston was widely regarded as the "Wall Street of the South" and was a bustling city. Today Galveston draws crowds to its Strand National Historic District ArtWalk event where shops and exhibits open their doors. With an average climate of 70 degrees, outdoor recreation and sports are popular for families, retirees and young professionals alike.

  • Buyer Profile: Families and Retirees.
  • County: Galveston County.
  • Median Listing Price: $289,900.


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